Q: Hi, I have recently turned 60 and I would like to access my super. I have not worked mid July 2018. Is there any reason why I would not be able to withdraw on my super? I have not been getting unemployment benefits.
You will need to confirm your entitlements with your super fund but the general rules applicable to an individual aged 60 or over are set out below.
Under the super rules, an individual aged 60 or over, is taken to have retired if an employment arrangement ends, AND/OR the trustee of the super fund is satisfied that the individual intends never again to become gainfully employed, either on a full-time or part-time basis. For a trustee to be satisfied, usually the super fund requires a retirement declaration.
Note: In the situation where an individual turns 60 AFTER terminating an employment agreement, the super benefits are not automatically available. In this instance, a trustee has to be satisfied that the individual intends never again to become gainfully employed, either on a full-time or part-time basis. The super fund generally requires a fund member to complete a retirement declaration. An individual however, can still work a handful of hours each week under this rule.
The key difference between the two scenarios above is: that turning 60 while employed then terminating employment, triggers a condition of release. In comparison, turning 60 after terminating employment means the individual must satisfy an alternative condition of release – typically ‘retirement’. For more information on the meaning of ‘retirement’, see SuperGuide article Accessing super: What does ‘retirement’ mean so I can withdraw my super?
If an individual doesn’t want to sign a retirement declaration because he or she is looking for work, a fund member who has reached preservation age can access super benefits via a transition-to-retirement pension (TRIP), or consider other conditions of release (see SuperGuide articles Accessing super early: 14 legal ways to withdraw your super benefits and Guide to transition to retirement pensions (TTRs or TRISs)).
An extract of the relevant regulation is set out below, but check your specific circumstances with your super fund since we are an information site rather than an advisory centre.
Sub-regulation 6.01 (7)
For the purposes of Schedule 1, the retirement of a person is taken to occur:
(a) in the case of a person who has reached a preservation age that is less than 60 — if:
(i) an arrangement under which the member was gainfully employed has come to an end; and
(ii) the trustee is reasonably satisfied that the person intends never to again become gainfully employed, either on a full-time or a part-time basis; or
(b) in the case of a person who has attained the age of 60 — an arrangement under which the member was gainfully employed has come to an end, and either of the following circumstances apply:
(i) the person attained that age on or before the ending of the employment; or
(ii) the trustee is reasonably satisfied that the person intends never to again become gainfully employed, either on a full-time or a part-time basis.
For more information…
For more information and accessing super benefits and retiring, see the following SuperGuide articles:
- I’m 60. Why can’t I access my super benefits?
- Does changing to part-time at 60 years, count as ‘retiring’?
- Accessing super: What is my preservation age?
- Retirement Age Reckoner: Discover your preservation age and Age Pension age
- Accessing super: Preservation age moves to 59 years
- What is the retirement age in Australia?
- Age 65: Accessing your super is a right
- Accessing super early: 14 legal ways to withdraw your super benefits